2. Be critical of what your spouse has to say.
This is a painful one to see in action, and I have even seen continued criticism end marriages. I don’t think any married couple tries to fall into this negative dynamic. It happens little by little, and it is rooted in pride. Criticism can take on a variety of forms from passive aggressiveness to abrupt and even harsh directness. And, both approaches carry the same amount of sting.
A critical spouse often feels like he/she needs to correct almost everything his/her spouse says. Or, this spouse feels like he/she needs to one-up whatever his/her spouse says and does, and the critical spouse is quick to point this out every time. If there is a mistake or flaw of any kind, the critical spouse lets his/her spouse know it, whether in private or public. And, little by little, the criticized spouse feels unloved and disrespected, and the relationship breaks down.
Instead of this negative approach, we need to resist being critical of our spouse. As much as possible, we need to overlook the petty stuff that may get on our nerves. If our spouse does something wrong or we need to point something out to him/her, then by all means, we need to do address it. However, we need to approach our spouse in the most respectful and positive way we can so that we can keep our relationship strong.
For more on criticism, please read “Husbands, Please Stop Doing This to Your Wife,” by clicking here.